Friends, we've reached the point of the calendar year when I realize I am in a perpetual bad mood, and it has everything to do with freaking Halloween costumes and slutty Little Red Riding Hoods-because nothing makes me crazier than paying $75 (x4) for the cheapest polyester sh#! available. And thus begins the Halloween death spiral, in which I scour the Internet searching for the highest quality costume, at the cheapest price.
I'll let you in on a little secret. It DOESN'T EXIST.
I hate you, Internet. Because I'm *pretty sure* my parents bought my Halloween costumes at the grocery store, and my options were a clown or a vampire. Now, they were STRAIGHT UP plastic, and hella flammable, but we took our chances on not spontaneously combusting, and it worked out. And EVERYBODY was a clown or a vampire so there was none of this one-upping with a princess gown embellished with real diamonds--except for that one year that my mom went rogue and decided to make me a smurfette costume, and well, we're just lucky that my face isn't still blue, because body paint that you could purchase (at the grocery store) in 1981 was *questionable* and likely to cause tumors in lab rats.
But now-a-days there's Amazon, and Costume Express, and Target; there's ebay and freaking Pinterest to make you feel like a real douche for not coming up with a woodland creatures theme, complete with an actual, magical forest. And it's all just a lot of pressure that I DON'T need, in the weeks leading up to three of my children's birthdays, and the final nail in the coffin of my sanity, Christmas--when the miracle of the savior's birth equals finding a pink zhu zhu pet on December 23rd.
My trolling of every retail outlet that sells Halloween costumes will ultimately lead to the ever disasterous conclusion--that I can make something for cheaper. Now, this is a bold face lie straight from Satan himself, because anything I create will 1.) be ill-fitting, 2.) look cheaper than a six-year-old slutty pumpkin and 3.) cost 100xs more (in dollars and human tears) than any costume mass produced in China.
I do, however, have a few things going for me this year, and they are that L wants to be the blue angry bird--EXACTLY what she was last year. Score!
Secondly, Big J wants to be a Jedi--which means I can re-use last year's costume, as technically, Obi-Wan was a Jedi. Star Wars nerds, if you get technical on the differences between Obi Wan and your standard, generic Jedi, then I will CUT YOU. This costume does, however, come with a few complications, as I need to sew a larger white tunic for my growing boy, or possibly that I need to find the tunic that went with our store-purchased Jedi costume of 2010--but that was like, three houses and 17 lifetimes ago, so I'm skeptical that this will work out in a manner that doesn't involve me spending $50 to recreate the exact same costume that we've worn for four years straight. I don't know what this means, exactly, except that when I die my children will discover a "Groundhogs Day" type of scenario, involving a time warp and an entire basement's worth of the same Halloween costume--and somehow their entire childhoods will make some kind of sense.
Little J will be going as Darth Vader, which means I simply need to purchase black clothing and make a black robe. Now, you Halloween rookies might think sewing the cape is the complicated part of this endeavor, and here is where I will tell you--YOU ARE WRONG. Finding plain, black clothing, void of company logos and large skater graphics is like locating the Holy Grail, and it is about this time every year that I dream of creating a kids clothing company that sells only basic styles in SOLID COLORS, because Wal-Mart only carries plain hooded sweatshirts between Sept. 14-17.
Now G, she wants to be Hermione Granger--and this will prove to be the costume that causes me to officially become unglued. I *think* I can make her cape, because really, how different is it than Darth Vaders? Harry Potter nerds, if you go into great detail as to WHY they are, indeed, completely different, I will boil your rabbit. Because as it turns out, I'm also gonna need a Gryffindor patch for the cape, a tie and a scarf, and a grey sweater vest and a wand and a REAL OWL to make this at all believable. According to ebay, I can buy the patch and the tie STRAIGHT from a Chinese factory for $.50, but WHAT IF it's more of a purple stripe, rather than the more authentic scarlet red? Then I am officially screwed, WEEKS before I am scheduled to botch Christmas by failing to locate the rare and elusive "Jabba's Palace" lego set that was manufactured in 2003 (which is unfortunately, the ONLY THING that will make Santa, and Jesus for that matter, real to a seven-year-old boy). Honestly, catching and domesticating a Missouri barn owl will probably be easier than not losing my freaking mind at this point.
There are so many small and moving parts to each costume, that it all makes me kind of bitchy. I haven't even begun, and yet I am kind of wishing it was November--and let's face it, that's the month when I begin to have actual panic attacks over HOW MUCH it costs to purchase a Nintendo DS, or WHERE I can get the American Girl Doll of the Year, and very often I'm tempted to simply pick a litter of *free* kittens out of a dumpster and call it a disease-ridden holiday.
But not before I survive school picture day, and the big kicker...a school-wide bike rally, in the next two weeks. Stay tuned, because acquiring four WORKING bikes and getting them all to school on a single day is God's way of providing for GREAT blog material.